Story Contest 2020 #2 Results »

Senior 1st Prize Winning Story - A Dream Lived Again

“A Dream Lived Again” by Jayanth Ramganesh, GEMS Millennium School, Sharjah, UAE, is the First Prize winning story in the senior category of the second biannual Short Story Contest 2020.

Jayanth Ramganesh is a student of Grade 9. He is an avid reader who also loves writing stories and poems. He regularly participates in literary events. His other hobbies are playing the guitar, cycling and playing chess. He is also a Black Belt Dan 4 in Karate.

A Dream Lived Again

Finally, there he was. Standing in the middle of time with rainbow light shimmering and dancing around him. To his left and right, were his past and future. His time-travelling machine was a resounding success. Right behind him, in the humongous auditorium, an expectant crowd was waiting to try out the machine, which was clanking and whizzing. But he was completely oblivious to whatever was happening around him. The time-travelling machine had pulled him away from reality into a world of his own, as he was frozen in time.

Ray was proud to have created this machine. He could now travel to any point in his life, from his birth to his old age, and view it again in front of him. He decided to walk back in time first.

As he strolled back through the tunnel of time, he was able to relive many memorable events. He was able to witness his happy childhood along with his family and friends. He was able to see himself as a baby, and he could see his parents tenderly caressing him. All the faded memories of his childhood which he grew out of decades ago were now rejuvenated, as Ray saw it right in front of him. His most memorable day was when his parents got to know that he wanted to be a scientist, whose first and foremost ambition was to create a time machine for people. His parents were very supportive people who did everything to help him realise his goal. They sent him to the best school in their city, even though they had to tighten their belts a lot to make ends meet. The sacrifices they made for his sake brought stinging tears to his eyes. Ray understood the importance that was being given to his studies, and he wanted to make his parents proud. He soon left his classmates far behind in studies. All the teachers were greatly delighted with this exceptionally brilliant student. Happy tears misted his eyes as he recollected these sweet memories.

Then his happy tears changed into sad ones, as he remembered one fateful day. He was at home, playing chess with his mother, when they heard loud bangs and glass splintering. They rushed to the window and saw workers throwing stones at factories before smoke obscured their window. His dad came home exhausted, his white hands holding a piece of paper. It turned their lives upside down.

The worker strikes around the city and the loss of millions of jobs forced them to migrate somewhere else. They travelled to a small village and hoped to stay there until the problems alleviated. Ray was very depressed. ‘Will I ever get the chance to achieve my goal?’ He remembered thinking this a lot. He finished school, but as a result of the unexpected downturn in his life which had made him very despondent, he was not able to focus on his studies, and was not known as the brightest student anymore.

The job that Ray got after finishing school was a godsend for him and his family. He was hired as an assistant to a scientist. He poured out his story to the scientist, who was willing to help him.

Ray worked hard for the scientist, and they bonded together very well. Unfortunately, the scientist was offered a job in a distant country, and he bid goodbye to Ray and left. He was also hit with a double tragedy, as his parents passed away soon after. Ray was devastated, but his determination drove him to build the time machine. Finally, he succeeded.

A wave of emotions washed over him as he recalled these distant memories, and he turned and travelled to the present again. His eyes fell upon a tiny black box in the corner of the machine’s apparatus. It was his prized invention, a telepathic transmitter. In the past, it did not work, and he almost gave up trying to fix it. But he then remembered the story of his life, and his parents’ words: “We won’t always be there to help you. One day, you will have to learn to solve problems on your own. Then you will be the most successful man on Earth.”

Filled with faith in himself, Ray slowly walked over to the transmitter, and rested his hand on the switch. His entire past, present, and future seemed to lead to this moment. Ray closed his eyes and took a deep breath.



Just as Ray was going to deflate, he heard a fuzzy voice inside his head, slowly getting clearer.

“Son, you have fulfilled our wishes. Even if life threw you to the ground, you got up again. Well done.”

Ray stood there, transfixed for a moment. Then he slowly turned around and faced the crowd. All of a sudden, they all heard a voice inside their heads.

“These, ladies and gentlemen, are my newest inventions, the time-travelling machine, and the telepathic transmitter.”

A burst of applause resounded around the room.

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